How to Take an Organized Approach to Looking at your Online Business Market

Three paths to an online market audit of your online publishing niche

What should you do when you realize you don’t have the resources to go “multiplatform” in all your markets?

No doubt, yesterday’s Mequoda Daily blog generated anxiety for some publishers. The consequences of realizing the realignment happening in the publishing world may take you out of your comfort zone.

If you’re wondering where your publications fit, and how to analyze your whole market, there’s good news.

We call it the Online Market Audit.

How to start the online market audit process

We offer this information in three formats.

In about an hour, I can teach you how to do your own Online Market Audit.

With your Mequoda Pro membership, you could be viewing my video training program on how to do an Online Market Audit — almost instantly.

In the training module, I explain how to use Google and Compete to unearth the data you need to help you make informed decisions about the future of your market. It also includes a sample audit that we did for the Motley Fool to get you started, and an Mp3 of the program to download.

It’s simply hard work. It will probably take you 50-100 hours to complete the process. Anyone with good analytical skills can do it, but it doesn’t require you to have an in-depth knowledge of the market. It simply requires an attitude of receptiveness to the process.

Sign up for our $197 introductory Mequoda Pro Charter Membership and receive this training program, along with seven more modules. In the upcoming months, we’re expanding Mequoda Pro with twelve new training programs.

Alternatively, you can attend the next Mequoda Summit in Boston, October 7-9, 2009, where we’ll spend at least an hour explaining the Online Market Audit process in a live workshop.

Register today for the Boston Mequoda Summit and Internet Marketing Conference, October 7-9, 2009 and get our special early-bird discount.

As a third alternative, the Mequoda Pro Research Team and I can conduct an Online Market Audit for you.

We’ll do the research to answer seven important questions about the online market in which you operate and compete.

  • How big is your market?
  • How fast is your market growing?
  • What is the seasonality in your market?
  • What keywords does your market use?
  • Who are your top competitors?
  • Who are your potential content partners?
  • Who are your potential marketing partners?

We will identify the 10 best primary keywords phrases that describe and define what your website delivers and determine how many competitors you have for these keywords. Then we’ll import the results into an Excel spreadsheet until we have at least 200 popularity-ranked URLs that feature your keyword phrases.

Next we will cross-reference this data with advanced web analytics tools to determine both current and historic unique visitor counts.

The resulting report will identify each of the 200 competitors in your market niche by website archetype (retail, online store, periodical hub, etc.) and by revenue model (user-driven, sponsor-driven or hybrid).

Finally, we’ll analyze the resulting database to determine your market size, annual year-to-year growth, seasonality, traffic patterns, etc.

Among other results, we will discover which content models are dominating (or perhaps missing) in your market. Our analysis will include revenue models of each of these competitive websites to enable you to better understand how the best operators in this market niche make money.

To learn more about how Mequoda can complete an Online Market Audit of your publications, please contact Kim Mateus at (401) 396-9677 or email

No matter which way you decide to do it, your Mequoda Online Market Audit will include a detailed spreadsheet and analysis of the size and seasonality of your market, its rate of growth, and the keyword phrases it uses to compete for search engine traffic.

At the end of the audit, you’ll know your online competitors as well as your potential content and marketing partners.


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